Hollywood is in a tizzy over the early tracking which just came online this morning for Walt Disney Studios‘ John Carter opening March 9th.
“Not good. 2 unaided, 53 aware, 27 definitely interested, 3 first
choice,” a senior exec at a rival studio emails me. Another writes
me, “It just came out. Women of all ages have flat out rejected the
film. The tracking for John Carter
is shocking for a film that cost over $250 million. This could be the
biggest writeoff of all time.” I’m hearing figures in the neighborhood
of $100 million.
Well, that’s not good. I’ve noticed there have been what seems like several million new John Carter TV spots and clips released (one of which is above), but other than in my head, there doesn’t seem to be much real excitement for it. I still think the movie will be good — possibly even excellent — but it does seem like no one’s going to watch it. I admit, the idea that John Carter is going to making $100 million while James Cameron’s Avatar, a pale simulacrum of John Carter with a scoop of Dances with Wolves thrown in for good measure made over a billion dollars, is proof that we do not live in the best of all possible nerd worlds.
Robert Bricken is one of the original co-founders of the site formerly known as Topless Robot, and its first editor-in-chief, serving from 2008-12. He brought the site to prominence with “nerd news, humor and self-loathing” as its motto, raising it from total internet obscurity to a readership in the millions, with help from his savage “FAQ” movie reviews and Fan Fiction Fridays. Under his tenure Topless Robot was covered by Gawker, Wired, Defamer, New York magazine, ABC News, and others, and his articles have been praised by Roger Ebert, Avengers actor Clark Gregg, comedian and The Daily Show correspondent John Hodgman, the stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Rifftrax, and others. He is currently the managing editor of io9.com. Despite decades as both an amateur and professional nerd, he continues to be completely unprepared for either the zombie apocalypse or the robot uprising.